Come July the weather was getting really hot. July and August are not months for strenuous activity. When we had nothing else to do we took to heading to the beach at around 4pm and cooling down in the sea for a couple of hours. We continued to do this through August, making use of beaches at Pamucak, Ahmetbeyli, and Claros.
We were aware that the islands were likely to be cooler, and Hilary had never been to Santorini, so a trip to Greece happened. We got the bus to Marmaris and hopped on a ferry to Rhodes. A week later we came back on the ferry from Kos to Bodrum. The trip was a lot of fun, an overnight stay in Rhodes, then on to Crete. After a couple of days in Chania, from whence we walked Samaria Gorge which was amazing, we moved on to Heraklion visited the museum which is being redeveloped, and then on to Santorini. We went to Akrotiri, the museum with the murals, hired a quad ATV, stuffed ourselves on Santorini Fava, and generally did the tourist thing. We even managed to find a reasonably priced restaurant with ‘the’ view.
Ramazan started in July and went on into August. We were not fasting, but many people around us were. It must have been pretty tough for those fasting, the days were hot and very long. The beach at Ahmetbeyli was a lot quieter, it is pretty hard to swim and avoid getting seawater in your mouth. We generally avoided eating on the roof terrace until after sunset, not really a problem, if was a lot cooler and more pleasant for eating after sunset.
By early August we decided that we wanted a portable air conditioning unit for the back house. It was day after day of temperatures around 37C, and remaining really hot at night. It took us a little while to get the unit we wanted, there were delivery problems, but eventually it arrived. We mostly used it at night, to help us sleep.
For us the beach remained the place to be in the late afternoon, a chance to get a break from the heat.
We took another trip south to the Mediterranean coast. To Uçağız which is spectacular. We walked to Kaleköy, not far, but in the blistering heat it was tough enough. We chartered a boat to take us to Kekova and to various other places (mostly swimming places). We shared the boat with two really pleasant French tourists who like us wanted no music. We swam, snorkelled in some amazingly clear water, walked to Aperlae – it was a fantastic day out.
Later in August on of Ashley’s crowns fell out. We went back to the local dentist who had fixed it the last time. The problem was that the tooth beneath it had broken so the solution was not going to be so simple. We were given various options and various costs for the options. In the end we opted for having a whole load of work done, very much the same as what was planned on the NHS before we left the UK, crowns and bridges. This work went on for a few weeks, it was traumatic, but worth it.
Remaining on health issues, in September we became eligible to buy into the state health insurance scheme. For us this represented very good value, because the one policy covers both of us. It did mean that once again we had to go through the bureaucracy of state, was a couple of days of running back and forth to Tire and offices in Selçuk.
We got a phone call from the police inviting us to attend the police station in relation to Ashley’s application for a Turkish driving licence which he made last June. We went, filled out some more forms, Ashley had a blood test for grouping, paid some charges at the tax office, and the back to the police station for fingerprints. A day later we were called again and told the licence was ready for collection. Ashley now has 2 driving licences, his UK one and his new Turkish one. Unlike the UK one it is for life.
Frank, a friend of ours had by chance booked a last minute week in Gumbet. He abandoned Gumbet for a few days and came to stay with us. We showed him around Ephesus and did a few other tourist bits.
We contracted a local builder to convert our basement into a garage. The work was done over a weekend because during the week he was busy doing restoration work on the castle. The window was moved, a new door fitted, and a ramp made for the bike. It is a much more sensible use of this space and made us clear a load of stuff we had stored (dumped) in there.
Our last road trip of the year took place over late September and into October. To Eğirdir. We used Eğirdir as a base to visit Sagalassos, and had planned at least one other trip out. Sagalassos was amazing. The other planned day trip ended up with us sat in the local sanayı having the rear wheel respoked. Not what we had planned. We will be going back to Eğirdir next year, there is more we want to see in the area and it is so beautifully located, the sunset over the lake was particularly good.